The WePay Blog recently posted a very interesting breakdown of what gifts are worth to the recipient. Apparently, there is a significant devaluation to the gift-giving process, especially where gift cards are concerned. (For those of you cynical enough to think about gift-giving in terms of valuation, this is the post for you!)
I’m of a mixed-mind when it comes to the gift card debacle. Having worked in retail, I know that stores lurrrve gift cards, because they invite people to spend more. This is an axiom that I’ve found to hold true in my own life. Let’s do a quick break down of what these cards are worth to me:
$25 Meijer Gift Card: I’ve already decided that I’m not using this card on “normal” groceries, I’ll be buying fun and special food-type stuff instead. Still, I’ll probably spend close to $40, so the card is worth -$15.
$25 AMC Gift Card: This is a little different, because my brother got one as well. Our combined worth is enough for both of us to see 2 movies (at our heinously expensive local theatre). However, we’ll have about 6 bucks left, so we’ll see a third. Meaning a loss of about $10.
$50 Visa Gift Card: Here’s where it gets fun. I’m using this card to buy two things I was going to get around to buying anyway. (A curling iron and a blender.) I view this as win-win.
Cash: Many people prefer to receive cash for the holidays. I tend to disagree. When I get cash, I immediately throw it in savings or parlay it into fixed costs. (I’d like to thank my Grandma for buying my Korean books and my Aunt Elaine for buying my half of a split-polisci set.) But I do appreciate having the extra cushion right after the holidays. (Re: Lost paycheck.)
But then again, my overly sentimental sensibilities push for me to arrest these overjoyously capitalist valuations of my presents. Because I like getting presents and I love that people in my life are thinking about me when they buy them. It means so much to me that my boyfriend’s mother knows that Meijer is my food purveyor of choice and that my Dad wants to offset the cost of my brother and I’s holiday film binge. Even gifts that start to devalue immediately upon purchase (electronics, that schnazzy pair of gloves I got this year) far exceed their cash value in sentimental currency.
But what say you, miniscule readership? Are your gifts worth face-value? More? Less?